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Our Day


Published 1938


Named to the National Film Registry in 2007, "Our Day" is a day-in-the-life portrait of the Kelly family of Lebanon, Kentucky. Wallace Kelly's amateur cast was made up of his mother, wife, brother, and pet terrier. The film documents a modern home inhabited by adults with sophisticated interests and simple ones. Kelly, a newspaperman, was also an accomplished photographer, painter, and writer. He began shooting film in 1929 and continued until the 1950s.


Producer Wallace Kelly
Audio/Visual silent, black & white
Language English
Contact Information info@centerforhomemovies.org


Credits

Filmmaker: Wallace McElroy Kelly
Cast: Mattie (Mrs. Oliver) Kelly - his mother
Mabel Graham Kelly - his wife
Oliver G. Kelly - his brother, editor of The Lebanon Enterprise

Reviews

Reviewer: Nagnostic - - January 12, 2014
Subject: Our Day saved for another day
We are fortunate that Mr. Kelly had the skill and wherewithal to produce this little home movie, and his family shares credit, contributing fairly decent acting to the effort.

Not everybody had a film camera during the 1930s, and not everybody owning one was able to pull off an entertaining piece such as this. Regardless of relative skill level involved, any film documentation of everyday people and life in general in pre-WWII America and elsewhere is precious.

Additionally fascinating are some of the reactions to Mr. Kelly's film. They remind me of Cultural Revolution shaming sessions directed towards the bourgeois and professional classes. "Upper-middle-class!"... "See! A maid!"... "That cat is being oppressed by the running dog of impetuousness!"... "Three-piece suits!" So predictable it's sad.

The best example of misguided criticism here is the one begging for an edit to include sound effects and music. Simply amazing.


Reviewer: dahszil - - January 8, 2014
Subject: good doc on early 20th c upper middle class america but
But I think it would not be a bad thing to have some voice overs, ambient sounds(foot steps, dog yapping, etc-foley effects), and period music here and there. Just so you notify at beginning and the end of film, you did so. I am a tech idiot so I hope someone does the aforementioned suggestions. I mean even the pre 1927 silent films come with music and a lot more narrative clips or whatever. i know this was just a home made film i gather, but someone make it better please. btw did that poor cat live?! And I thought the cold ignoring of the black maid was sadly revealing about Kentucky and the south at the time. One of the sadist things in american history is the failure of The Reconstruction after the civil war.
Reviewer: SteveSutton - - June 22, 2013
Subject: Enjoyable
There was no sound, but that just added to the experience of watching this charming video.
Reviewer: Unmasker - - May 21, 2011
Subject: Waking Up Fairly Rich in Pre-WW2 America
A well-to-do 1930's family wakes up and goes through their day thanks to the driving force of the grandmother and berserk, cat-chewing dog. After perhaps an hour's work they come home and play games. And oh, look! There's the Negro cook. Silent but well photographed.
Reviewer: aswegohomestead - - May 30, 2010
Subject: A Remarkable Treasure
I couldn't stop watching once I got started. I am old enough to remember those times. This was a "feel good" film. Excellent camera work, editing and production. Well worth the download. And the terrier is a riot!!! especially with the cat LOL. Watch it and enjoy!
Reviewer: qrper - - June 19, 2009
Subject: advanced amateur
This fellow had an idea of what he was doing. Especially appreciated his steady camera and lack of wildly panning shots. Expected to see Andy Hardy flying down the stairs. Very enjoyable.
Reviewer: goldensmile - - January 2, 2009
Subject: Well worth the watch
This is well worth the download. Staged, yes but who had film cameras in the 30's. This is a daily ritual movie with a fairly well off family. However a lot of what you will see is very true to life for the middle class of the time.

Great kitchen scenes.
Reviewer: ERD. - - December 19, 2008
Subject: Our Day is delightful
I really enjoyed watching this 1938 middle class all adult family going through their daily routines. It looked so ideal. Their terrier dog was a charmer. Film is in excellent condition for its age.
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